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Counselor Education and Supervision


Katarzyna Peoples


AbstractFor nearly 4 decades, trauma-informed care has been the focus of numerous scholarly studies in a variety of contextual settings. While the focus of most research in education has been on how school staff might implement trauma-informed practices, little research exists that supports the understanding of the role of the professional school counselor (PSC) in the implementation of trauma-informed care. The purpose of this hermeneutic phenomenological study was to examine how 9 PSCs experienced the implementation process of trauma-informed care within their school. This study used purposive and snowball sampling in a semistructured interview format to tease out themes related to the implementation process. Through the use of both inductive and deductive coding of the data, I identified several initial meaning units that I combined into subthemes, which resulted in three main themes. These themes included the impetus for moving to a trauma-informed approach, the factors involved in experiencing greater satisfaction in the implementation process, and the factors involved in experiencing less satisfaction in the implementation process. Key results of this study indicated when PSCs identify reasons for moving to a trauma-informed environment, they experience greater satisfaction in the implementation process, and their feelings of effectiveness increase. These results have social change implications for the training, practice, and supervision of current and future PSCs. Direct information from PSCs who have implemented these practices adds to the scholarly literature around the importance of treating youth with trauma histories in a sensitive informed way. Findings from this study may help train current and future PSCs in how to implement trauma-informed practices in their work with students.

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